Sometimes I like to feature an upcoming Chicago show or two on this site, both to keep local readers’ concert calendars updated and also to let everybody know about some great live acts in case the tour also passes through your town. Today I’m going to tell you about two shows happening in Chicago this Friday, one from some high profile artists you may have heard of and the other from a much lower profile but equally exciting act. Let’s start with the higher profile one.

The Aragon Ballroom isn’t my favorite place to see a show, nor should it be yours, but sometimes a lineup is just too good to avoid going there. Friday night’s show features Silversun Pickups, School of Seven Bells and Atlas Genius, and it’s the sort that qualifies as important and nearly essential. Silversun Pickups are touring in support of their latest album Neck of the Woods, which I liked quite a bit even if other publications felt differently. One thing a lot more people agreed on was that School of Seven Bells’ latest album Ghostory is very good and well constructed, even as they suffered the exit of Claudia Deheza, who made some incredible harmonies with her sister Alejandra. Having seen both of these bands perform live before, I can attest that they both put on great shows worth seeing. The wild card on this bill is Atlas Genius, who after releasing their debut EP Through the Glass earlier this summer have quicky become a buzzed about, hypeworthy band. Have you heard their song “Trojans” yet? It’s remarkably catchy, as are “Back Seat” and Symptoms“. You’re definitely going to want to arrive right when the show starts at 7 to see them perform. It’s an all ages show, tickets are $32 and available for purchase here, or possibly at the door.

For something completely different on Friday night, and hypothetically you could go to this once the Silversun Pickups show lets out, UK avant-electro composer Max Cooper will be headlining a show at Vision Lair. The guy is really talented, especially when you look at how he “Reconstructs” Michael Nyman’s “Secrets” or remixes Hot Chip’s “I Feel Better“. His current 10-date U.S. tour is in support of his forthcoming Conditions EP, which features a collaboration with the art rock band Braids. Needless to say, it’s fascinating stuff. I’m sure Cooper doesn’t put on a typical live show either, or at least not the sort of one you’d expect from today’s electronica artists. Given that it goes from 10pm-4am, this is a 21+ show. Tickets will be $15 at the door, which is relatively inexpensive when you look at a lot of other club shows in and around Chicago on weekends. If you’d like additional info, here’s a link where you can find out more.

Okay, now let’s tackle this Wednesday edition of Pick Your Poison. Recommended tracks today come from Black Forest Fire, Drug Cabin, Ending People, Heems, Midtown Dickens, Rosie Flores, The Soft Moon and Xiu Xiu. The Soundcloud section is thick with good songs available for streaming, including 2:54 covering Seal & Adamski, SURES, Teen Daze (ft. Frankie Rose), and Liars remixing The Twilight Sad.

Alexx Foxx & Ninetynine – Together

Black Forest Fire – Live News Feed

CIRC – Girls Thoughts

Drug Cabin – Whatever Never

Dying Machines – Await You

Ending People – Beat of My Heart

The Erratic Man – Back in the Day (Bless Beats Remix)

Get People – Cupid’s Curse

The Golden Pony – About A Minute (ft. T-Dome)

Heems – Let It Go (ft. Cee Gee)

Jack Ladder & The Dreamlanders – Dumb Love

Midtown Dickens – Cross My Heart

Oreaganomics – All Thumbs and No Tung

Paul Avion – Self-Destroyer

Peter Doran – Julia

Rosie Flores – Working Girl’s Guitar

Simian Ghost – Wolf Girl (Slow Magic Remix)

The Soft Moon – Insides

That’s No Moon – According to Ancient Alien Theorists

Xiu Xiu – Quagga


2:54 – Killer (Seal & Adamski cover)

Chaos Chaos – My Hands

SURES – The Sun

Swansea – Times Are Low

Teen Daze – Union (ft. Frankie Rose)

The Twilight Sad – NIL (Liars Remix)